There’s something about summertime and music that just makes sense. Like peanut butter and jelly or Holmes and Watson, they just go hand in hand. That’s why it’s been no surprise hearing all the amazing concert stories as my fellow classmates returned to campus. From life-changing festivals to encounters with superstars, Maryville College students have had quite an earful this year.
Ever since the middle of spring all anyone has been talking about is the infamous Tennessee music festival Bonnaroo. I myself almost managed to make it but missed out on a great ticket opportunity. Despite that, several more got to enjoy it in my stead.
One such person, junior Whitney Hunt, had quite an encounter during one of the bigger shows; she actually got peed on. Apparently another concert-goer couldn’t contain his excitement (or manage his BAC) and let loose on the unsuspecting Hunt.
Did that rain on her parade? Not a chance. The riveting musical prowess of indie rock band Arcade Fire still managed to steal the show for Hunt.
“Urine couldn’t taint my excitement. [Arcade Fire] made the whole fiasco totally okay,” she said.
Another junior, Chris Gildrie, worked at the festival and greeted artists as they checked in for performance. Gildrie even had a brief encounter with the legendary rap artist Eminem. It was an interesting opportunity, not just for getting a glimpse at the stars, but to see the inner clockwork of the music industry.
“I was able to see exactly how the check-in process is done with a festival that size”, Gildrie stated.
And seeing Eminem? “Amazing.”
Still, you don’t have to go that far to get a music fix. Even the local area has witnessed superstars on occasion. Take country singer Taylor Swift, for example. When she hit up Knoxville this past July, senior Justin Kirkland made sure not to miss out.
“I think if you can get past the double digit wardrobe changes, pianos coming up from the floor, bridges coming down from the ceiling and her mid-audience performances, she’s clearly done a lot of work on her voice. So awesome,” Kirkland said.
It wasn’t just Tennessee residents that got to enjoy legendary festivals, though. Scotland resident and MC junior John Robertson was jamming to other titan artists across the pond. T in the Park, a festival that showcased bands like Coldplay, Arctic Monkeys and The Foo Fighters, was more than just a grand ol’ time.
According to Robertson, it was life changing.
“At T in the Park, it doesn’t matter who you are or where you’re from,” he said. “All of Scotland is united, and it’s absolutely beautiful.”
With all those megastars, what’s not to enjoy? I personally got to see an artist of similar caliber just a few weeks ago when I ventured to Nashville to see everyone’s favorite teenage dream, Katy Perry, in the flesh. Perry’s show featured a twisted, sugary sweet narrative that explores the core of her heart and soul. She’s sexy, stylish and possesses a certain sophisticated crass. Trust me though; it’s not all cotton candy and glitter. The woman is a powerhouse vocalist, and her concert was outstanding.
Whatever your genre, I have no doubts that each one of us here at Maryville has a deep love for music. It may be rap, rock or even reggae, but no matter your style, I encourage each of you to make an effort to go out to some big name concerts.
They’re definitely worth the while, and it’s bound to be an event you’ll never forget.